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aftershocks
02-02-2013, 06:57 PM
^^ Yes, thanks Sylvia. I recall reading that article last year. It's interesting to take a look at it again. Many of the U.S. men mention the physical demands and also the mental challenges in training the quad, but none of them really speak specifically regarding the necessary pre-conditioning and all around physical monitoring required. (Probably they all are engaging in such warm-up, cool down and massage therapy strategies as part of their overall training in general, but it seems as if it's even more important to focus on in training quads).

In reading the article again, I took particular note of the fact that Max Aaron and Alexander Johnson both spoke about the importance for them of perfecting their triple jump technique first: "Aaron's first step was to refine the technique of his triple Salchow so that he got into a rotating position in the air faster..." And per Johnson: "I started working on the basic technique of my triples, and when that felt solid enough to try a quad, we went for it."

Ross and others mention the "toll on your body," and Doug Razzano cautions: "... don't overdo it and listen to your body because these are the jumps where the injuries happen." So, therefore, IMO a more structured and well-thought out training and conditioning approach should be carefully designed and implemented (taking into account physical variations and different needs and tendencies among individual athletes). As it is now, it seems to be a kind of Wild Wild West atmosphere with everyone trying stuff out and toughing it out to see what works best for them and when the showdown with the quad occurs event after event and season after season, it's just the luck of the draw as to who remains standing in the end. And even then, without a better overall strategy and physical conditioning program with orthopedic check-ups, multiple injuries and surgeries might loom either before or after retirement.

In regard to injuries stemming from overuse of the quad, probably a lot depends upon individual athletes' physical makeup and training strategies. For example, Ilia Kulik has not seemed to have suffered many (or any?) quad-related injuries, but then he didn't compete the quad over a long extended period of time. He won Olympic gold in 1998 at the age of 20 and promptly retired.

overedge
02-02-2013, 07:04 PM
So, therefore, IMO a more structured and well-thought out training and conditioning approach should be carefully designed and implemented (taking into account physical variations and different needs and tendencies among individual athletes).

Pretty much every skater at an international level (in the US and Canada at least) is working with trained exercise professionals and physiotherapists who are doing exactly that for each one of them. If a skater wants to push things beyond what is physically sensible for them, that's their choice, but I don't think you can blame a rash of injuries on their training and conditioning programs not being properly designed.

kwanfan1818
02-02-2013, 07:09 PM
Timothy Goebel discussed this in his Skate Lesson Podcast interview. He spoke about doing virtually no warm-up and starting to jump and jump and jump off the bat. It was the macho thing to do, just like tennis players talked about similar things back in the day. Mets outfielder Mookie Wilson blew out his shoulder when his then-manager insisted he throw at full strength at the beginning of spring training one season.

Like anything else, if athletes are trained from the beginning to warm up properly, do off-ice training, and to build into their jump practices, it's a habit that many or most will continue. The fluff piece on Chan's off-ice training regimen last season couldn't hurt, as athletes try to replicate successful methods and emulate systematic, professional training methods.

BittyBug
02-02-2013, 07:25 PM
If a skater wants to push things beyond what is physically sensible for them, that's their choice, but I don't think you can blame a rash of injuries on their training and conditioning programs not being properly designed.I think you also need to look at the coaches, as there's a fine line between pushing your skater through a blah day, tiredness, etc. and forcing them to skate injured (i.e., "you're just faking because you're feeling lazy today," when in fact the skater may truly be injured). Examples of this abound.

aftershocks
02-02-2013, 07:38 PM
...
Like anything else, if athletes are trained from the beginning to warm up properly, do off-ice training, and to build into their jump practices, it's a habit that many or most will continue. The fluff piece on Chan's off-ice training regimen last season couldn't hurt, as athletes try to replicate successful methods and emulate systematic, professional training methods.

Yes, I think that's the key. It's important to "replicate successful methods and emulate systematic, professional training" and conditioning practices. I get the sense that people within the sport have only recently begun to understand the full measure of the daunting implications of training and competing quads. I don't think any systematic conditioning and injury prevention program/ strategies have been put into place across the board yet.

As BittyBug notes, varying coaching methods and approaches also have a huge impact on whether athletes are fully aware of and engaged in implementing smart training and conditioning strategies/ techniques.

kwanfan1818
02-02-2013, 07:52 PM
I've always wished there was a skating equivalent of ballet barre, where each skill is warmed up before going on to do control moves, combinations and jumping, each progressing to the next. Imagine if after off-ice stretching and warm-up, every skater had to start with basic stroking, then edge work, then holding edges, then FW passages of different character, then spins -- Button said Lussi taught jumps as spins in the air -- then jumps, then programs. This is financially unviable, unless skaters are taught in groups, but I think the skaters would be more accomplished all around and the programs more watchable.

aftershocks
02-02-2013, 09:25 PM
^^ Sounds like a great approach, even if as beginning and ending practices at training rinks.

Where did you read that about Lussi's training techniques? Maybe there is something that skaters today can learn from some of the better training/ coaching methods (likely some have already been passed down -- but there is not seemingly a uniform approach). In acting, different approaches and methods to working on craft might be okay, but maybe in such a physically demanding sport/ art such as figure skating, a more unified training and conditioning approach is needed.

Sylvia
02-02-2013, 09:39 PM
A follow-up local Arizona article on Max Aaron: http://www.azcentral.com/sports/azetc/articles/20130128arizona-native-max-aaron-goes-from-brink-quitting-us-figure-skating-champion.html

“The training is really good here (in Arizona),” said Hal Marron, an international skating judge from Phoenix who is impressed with Aaron’s speed, jump amplitude and artistic energy. “But Max is skating side-by-side with the current World champion. It’s like going to an intensive boot camp who you can watch what it takes to be the best skater in the world. Not that he couldn’t have done the same thing in Phoenix, but without the other skaters around to motivate you I don’t know if he would have gotten as high.

“He always had an ability. Nothing really surprises me when I see somebody who works as hard as Max does. When the opportunity presented itself, he was there to take advantage of it. That’s the American dream.”

ETA brief article link from the Jewish Daily Forward:
http://forward.com/articles/170407/figure-skater-max-aaron-advances-to-world-champion/

In March, Aaron and second-place Ross Miner will both make their debut appearances on the world championship stage March 10-17 in London, Ontario.
Oops! :P

jlai
02-02-2013, 09:47 PM
Timothy Goebel discussed this in his Skate Lesson Podcast interview. He spoke about doing virtually no warm-up and starting to jump and jump and jump off the bat. It was the macho thing to do, just like tennis players talked about similar things back in the day. Mets outfielder Mookie Wilson blew out his shoulder when his then-manager insisted he throw at full strength at the beginning of spring training one season.

Like anything else, if athletes are trained from the beginning to warm up properly, do off-ice training, and to build into their jump practices, it's a habit that many or most will continue. The fluff piece on Chan's off-ice training regimen last season couldn't hurt, as athletes try to replicate successful methods and emulate systematic, professional training methods.

I remember Flatt being told to do a triple right off the bat, as a way to increase confidence in the jump (or something like that). hmmm.

skatesindreams
02-02-2013, 09:51 PM
Where did you read that about Lussi's training techniques? Maybe there is something that skaters today can learn from some of the better training/ coaching methods (likely some have already been passed down -- but there are is not seemingly a uniform approach). In acting different approaches and methods to working on craft might be okay, but maybe in such a physically demanding sport/ art such as figure skating, a more unified training and conditioning approach is needed.

aftershocks, you may be interested in this:

1980 Gustave Lussi - Pioneer American Coach
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxNN2XgDLkU

kwanfan1818
02-02-2013, 10:31 PM
There was a longer piece on Lussi's teaching that I once downloaded from FS Vids, also moderated by Button (or with lots of comments by him), but I don't see it on YouTube. He and interviewees discussed his teaching philosophy, and IIRC, there was at least one scene in it in which he sat in chair, maybe in the rink opening, and coached a skater or two in spins. I seem to remember Paul Wylie -- who did train with John Curry for at least a short while, maybe during a summer? -- but I don't remember if he was interviewed or was also one of the skaters being coached.

MacMadame
02-02-2013, 11:22 PM
When I was skating, my lesson time was during the day so I was on the ice with a lot of elite skaters. They all started out with stroking and a warm-up routine of some sort.

Some of them cut their warm-ups short because they were young and stupid but so do some ballet dancers. ;)

kwanfan1818
02-02-2013, 11:37 PM
Some ballet dancers might cut their warm-ups short before performances, but company class is usually a must, and cutting it short or coming late can mean not getting cast, which most dancers try to avoid. In a lot of dance academies' pre-professional divisions, they won't let you into class late, unless there are official circumstances.

aftershocks
02-02-2013, 11:56 PM
^^ Yes, the comparisons between figure skating and ballet are very interesting. I never thought of it before, but someone recently noted in another thread that men in ballet do a lot of rotational jumping somewhat similar to the athletic feats of male skaters, although dance floors have a lot more give than frozen ice.



aftershocks, you may be interested in this:

1980 Gustave Lussi - Pioneer American Coach
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxNN2XgDLkU

Thanks so much skatesindreams for the link! I look forward to taking a look at it.

skatesindreams
02-02-2013, 11:58 PM
There was a longer piece on Lussi's teaching that I once downloaded from FS Vids, also moderated by Button (or with lots of comments by him), but I don't see it on YouTube. He and interviewees discussed his teaching philosophy, and IIRC, there was at least one scene in it in which he sat in chair, maybe in the rink opening, and coached a skater or two in spins. I seem to remember Paul Wylie -- who did train with John Curry for at least a short while, maybe during a summer? -- but I don't remember if he was interviewed or was also one of the skaters being coached.

Here's some more information:
http://iceskatingresources.org/LussiSystematicJump&SpinTechniques.html
http://skatetape.com/instructional.aspx